Jimmy Roque Martínez

Protest against the World Cup, calling for funding for education and health care programs.

HAVANA TIMES –The World Cup in Brazil will soon be over. The news network TeleSUR has followed the sporting event enthusiastically. According to this “left-wing” broadcaster, the soccer championship is something that makes the people of Brazil and Latin America “proud.”

Curiously, TeleSUR has made next to no mention of those who were forced to leave their homes so that the multi-million-dollar sports facilities could be built. Nor has it followed the constant protests staged by the part of Brazil’s population that is against this World Cup and the repression they have been subjected to by the country’s military.

The news network makes no mention of the billions of dollars spent on the Cup, at a time when thousands live in abject poverty across the country, many in plain sight, at the side of the city’s luxurious avenues.

Something similar takes place when TeleSUR reports on Cuba: everything is positive. There is no talk of the profound difficulties we face or of the criticisms Cuban citizens’ level at the government’s policies.

The initial idea behind this television network was to promote the integration of Latin America and cover the social struggles there truthfully. Seeing the uncritical news on the governments that finance the network makes me think the program caters to the interests of these governments and not their peoples.

Could it be we’re dealing with the integration of the governments of Latin America, and not of its peoples?

TeleSUR may be an alternative to the mass media owned by transnational companies, but it certainly does not represent the peoples of the region. This late in the game, no one has any doubt that states and peoples are two different things.

Brazil’s displaced populations cannot turn to the big media or the network that ought to be their ally, TeleSUR. The very few times it has even tackled the issue, it has done it with an extremely low profile, in a manner identical to the way in which Miami’s media have done so, to mention an example.

Many poor Brazilians have been displaced by the construction projeccts for the World Cup.

I am not against having TeleSUR broadcast the World Cup, but I believe it should try to tackle the problems this sporting event has caused Brazil’s poor in a more in-depth manner. That should be its priority, for it is an issue that affects it’s raison d’etre, the dispossessed.

TeleSUR, like anything owned and paid for by those in power, makes concessions to the interests of the powerful. However, the Cuban press has been discredited to such an extent, is so sterile and uncritical, that the multinational chain, shortcomings and all, has a greater audience than our local news.

According to a Cuban government leader, the Cuban press does not lie, it merely does not divulge all of the information. As though that weren’t a form of lying!

TeleSUR was good news for us and it’s the best we’ve got, but it also does not provide us with all of the important information about the difficulties faced by the peoples of Latin America. Who, then, will report on the lot of the wretched of the earth?


Jimmy Roque Martinez

Jimmy Roque Martinez: I was born in Havana in 1979, and it seems that work has been my sign. Custodian, fish farmer, lens carver, welder, glass maker, optometrist, have been some of my trades. But none consumes as much of my time as caring for my family. For many years I’ve faced the least pretty face of this society, and I try to be happy while I transform it. I am too shy. I like silence, sleep, theater and movies. I hate injustice and arrogance, and I can hardly contain my anger when it happens in front of me.

4 thoughts on “Brazil’s Poor, the World Cup and TeleSUR

  • that was my point 🙂

  • Do you have a point?

  • Well that was your fault because of trusting Wikipedia 😀 LOL

  • According to the wiki page on TeleSUR, the network is sponsored by the governments of Argentina 20%, Bolivia 5%, Cuba 19%, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uruguay 10% and Venezuela 51%. If you noticed, that adds up to 105%, so somebody screwed up the arithmetic. In any event, the network is there to serve the interests of those governments.

    That in itself explains why they don’t mention the protests in Brazil against the World Cup. The Brazilian government paid over $11 billion to build the facilities, most of it going to the construction firm, Oldenbrecht. As it happens, Oldenbrecht is the largest corporate donator to Dilma Rousseff’s political party. They also funded Chavez & Maduro, who likewise rewarded it with lucrative contracts in Venezuela. As readers of Havana Times are no doubt aware, Oldenbrecht is the firm who holds the contract to build the Cuban port at Mariel and to renovate several outdated Cuban sugar mills.

    TeleSUR will not mention that which these Leftist governments who own it don’t want mentioned.

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